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Report: Four in Ten Teens are Cyberbully Victims


Aired 4/19/09

A national report finds four in ten teenagers are the victims of so-called "cyberbullies." Sweetwater Union High School District officials agree with the study, saying cyberbullying cases there have increased. KPBS reporter Ana Tintocalis has more.

A "cyberbully" is someone who uses different kinds of technology to send messages or images that will hurt or embarrass someone else. Researchers at the National Crime Prevention Council say cyberbullying is linked to school violence, depression and teen suicides. In the Sweetwater Union High School District, administrators are working with the Chula Vista Police Department to investigate serious cases. Student services director Loren Tarantino says teens use technology because it’s easier for them to get away with bullying.

Tarantino : These cyberbullies are very savvy at using someone else's email accounts. So, cyberbullying is very psychological and it’s very scary. 

Tarantino says school administrators can only do so much when it comes to disciplining students. That's because students use their own computers and cell phones off-campus. Ana Tintocalis, KPBS News.

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